By RACHEL REEVES
For anyone interested in film music, J. Blake Fichera’s SCORED TO DEATH books are essential reading. Packed with thoughtful analysis and in-depth interviews with iconic composers like Christopher Young, John Carpenter, Charles Bernstein, Richard Band and Charlie Clouser, Fichera’s books pull back the curtain on the unique, dark wizardry that is scoring for horror. Fichera plans to expand SCORED TO DEATH with a new feature-length documentary called SCORED TO DEATH: THE DARK ART OF SCARY MOVIE MUSIC.
Due to film’s broader possibilities, the documentary format will allow Fichera to dig even deeper into the special relationship between horror and music. Along with being a talented writer and passionate film fan, Fichera is also an experienced filmmaker and editor. This potent combo of skills makes him uniquely qualified to direct, edit and produce the project, but he can’t do it without some help from the horror community.
In a recent press release, Fichera said, “Ever since I started work on the first SCORED TO DEATH book back in 2013, the plan was always to turn it into a documentary. I am glad I waited, though. All the experience I gained and the friendships I made throughout the creation of both books and the SCORED TO DEATH podcasts will help make it a much better film than it would’ve been had I jumped into it right after the original book. What excites me about doing the documentary is that I can now explore this subject that I am hugely passionate about and have dedicated almost a decade of my life to studying in an entirely new way! The film will not be an abridged version of the books. Instead, I want to use the cinematic medium to hone in on specific aspects of the books and examine them in ways that weren’t possible on the written page – including how music functions in horror storytelling and our favorite scary movies.”
To help offset the costs of creating such a documentary, Scored to Death Entertainment LLC has launched a Kickstarter campaign. Running now through Halloween, all proceeds from the campaign will go directly toward the project. Although casting is still underway, some of the confirmed contributors include John Massari (Killer Klowns from Outer Space), Christopher Young (Hellraiser, Drag Me to Hell), Holly Amber Church (Open 24 Hours), Harry Manfredini (Friday the 13th) and Charlie Clouser (Saw).
Folks who donate to the campaign have a wide variety of tiers and incredible benefits to choose from. Some tier benefits include producing credit, bonus content, a physical copy of the film and signed copies of Fichera’s books. However, the most eye-catching benefit is a limited edition compilation album (available on CD or vinyl) of “memorable horror themes, specifically created for the campaign and featuring all-new recordings by horror music legend Alan Howarth, the bands Voyag3r and Anima Morte, Steve Moore (from the band Zombi), Holly Amber Church, Wojciech Golczewski, The Blair Brothers, Richard Christy (former Death and current Charred Walls of the Damned drummer) and more.”
The fact that Fichera has garnered support from such a prestigious and talented group of contributors speaks volumes about their belief in the project. And it’s easy to see why. For years, through the SCORED TO DEATH books and podcast (and the awesome doc segments he’s made so far), Fichera has shined a light on an often underappreciated but extraordinary type of film scoring that never gets the credit it deserves – with style and respect. The legacy of horror film music discussed by the maestros who have helped create it is not just a conversation that should happen. It needs to happen.
To help make SCORED TO DEATH: THE DARK ART OF SCARY MOVIE MUSIC happen, consider donating to the Kickstarter. There’s a tier for everyone, including those who simply want to help contribute with no benefit in return. For even more information on Fichera and the SCORED TO DEATH empire, check out his official website.